Bob Dylan

Bob Dylan

“I’ve had a God-given sense of destiny,” said legendary musician Bob Dylan in 2001. “This is what I was put on Earth to do.”

Dylan’s music transformed, and some would say defined, an entire generation. From classics that were part of the national soundtrack of the 1960s to his modern masterpieces such as the “Tempest” album, perhaps no other modern artist has created an oeuvre of such quality and cultural impact over such a length of time. Dylan even capped off his career by winning the Nobel Prize – in literature – in 2016.

Yet Dylan isn’t just a musician. The troubadour is something of a spiritual pilgrim, who has been on a remarkable religious quest. Jewish by birth, Dylan stunned the world by being baptized as a Christian in the 1970s. However, Jewish themes and references continued to play an important role in his life and career. And understanding Dylan’s journey is critically important for anyone who wants to understand his work or the cultural impact of Christianity in 20th century America.

A new book, “Bob Dylan: A Spiritual Life,” uses never-before-seen interviews and extensive research to examine the life and legacy of this American icon. And the spiritual life of Bob Dylan, according to one believer, contains an important lesson for all Christians.

“Here’s my very simple and direct take on the Dylan spiritual journey as a lifelong Dylan-phile,” says Joseph Farah, founder of WND and author of “The Restitution of All Things: Israel, Christians and the End of the Age.” “Dylan was born Jewish. He was bar mitzvahed. He was intrigued by the Bible throughout his life, and it is evidenced in his lyrics from his earliest days as a singer-songwriter. In or around 1978, he begins a Bible study at an Israel-centric evangelical church in Southern California. He discovers, perhaps for the first time, that Jesus – or Yeshua as He is known in Hebrew – is the Jewish Messiah.”

Farah has long championed the idea Jews do not cease being Jews because they accept Messiah.

“Does Bob Dylan, as a Jew, need to become a ‘Christian?'” he asked rhetorically. “Or does he just need to follow his Messiah? I would suggest it’s the latter. And I would suggest that’s just what Bob Dylan did. He didn’t have to join the ‘Christian culture.’ He didn’t have to renounce Judaism, because Jesus and all His disciples sure didn’t.”

The founder of WND suggested Dylan’s life provides a valuable spiritual lesson for all Christians, as the singer’s experience shows the Jewish roots of Christianity and the increasing importance of the Messianic community.

“That’s what is fundamentally wrong with all the conjecture about Dylan,” said Farah. “It all started when he went to Israel for the bar mitzvah of his son, Jesse, in 1983. The rumor started that he quit being a Christian and went back to Judaism. Folks, there is no need for a Jewish believer in Jesus-Yeshua to ‘convert.’ Jesus didn’t. Peter didn’t. Paul didn’t. John didn’t. James didn’t. They were all still entirely Jewish. I think Bob Dylan is smart enough to have figured this out long ago. His former wife confirms as much in the book.”

“Bob Dylan: A Spiritual Life” is the remarkable spiritual journey of an American icon. You’ll never look at American pop culture the same way again – or Christianity! Discover the true story behind one of the most influential artists of the 20th century.

Partially because of how it shines an entirely new light and perspective on a man everyone thought they knew, “Bob Dylan: A Spiritual Life” has won rave reviews from a host of prominent figures of diverse political views:

  • “I saw Bob Dylan in concert shortly after his conversion experience and was amazed by the raw courage it took to sing those new songs to increasing anger from his old fans and refuse to sing his earlier hits. Eventually he came to understand that he could pick and choose and integrate many of his old songs with the new and march forward as a man of faith. That’s the Dylan we meet in ‘Bob Dylan: A Spiritual Life.'”Pat Boone
  • “Scott Marshall, in his book ‘Bob Dylan: A Spiritual Life,’ reflects on the spiritual expressions of one of our country’s greatest artists, and there is no shortage of material from which to learn.” – President Jimmy Carter
  • “Bob has always been rock and roll’s poet laureate. A lyricist confesses a lot – we’re sort of our own psychotherapists – and ‘Gotta Serve Somebody’ is as close to a modern-day hymn as anything I can think of. Bob’s spirit is captured effectively in ‘Bob Dylan: A Spiritual Life’. If you can’t trust Bob Dylan, who can you trust?” – Alice Cooper
  • “Bob Dylan will not be labeled. For five decades now, he has avoided the trappings of every group that has wanted to claim him as their own. Call Dylan whatever you want, but the name won’t stick. What does stick is his music, in part because his songs contain a deep, abiding spirituality that moves listeners like me more than the songs of any other artist.” – Scott Derrickson, Hollywood director
  • “I always have a hard time writing anything down about Bob Dylan. Feels like he might want it that way. I saw Bob Dylan on my 13th birthday. Flew home for it. Felt like he ushered me into adulthood properly. I grew up with his songs – and somehow his songs have grown up with me as well. His words come in and out of my life like apparitions, appearing in mercurial forms ranging from the hipster iconoclast to the suburban prophet. Dylan’s songs have guided me from young aimless angst to a hope that is busy being born. Whatever he was singing about, I always felt like Dylan made me a believer.” – Jon Foreman, Switchfoot
  • “The concept of examining Bob Dylan and spirituality is an intriguing one. As a devoted student of Dylan, I can’t wait to see where this story leads. All things considered, it seems central to a real understanding of the maestro.” – Michael Levine, Hollywood publicist and author of Guerilla PR
  • “Bob Dylan has been an inspiration to me throughout my career, and I’ve been deeply affected by his spiritual journey. Rock and roll is at its best when it asks the important questions, as Bob has always done in his work, and there is no more important question than the question of God. ‘Bob Dylan: A Spiritual Life’ provides the final answer to those who doubt or minimize Bob’s spiritual commitment. His faith remains solid. He is the prophet of our generation and we ignore his warnings about a slow train coming at our own peril.” – Gary Cherone, lead singer, Extreme, Van Halen
  • “With ‘Bob Dylan: A Spiritual Life,’ Scott Marshall takes Dylan’s idiosyncratic faith walk seriously enough to bear with the obfuscation, jokes and sleight-of-hand that have always been a non-negotiable part of the journey. By doing so, Marshall patiently (and respectfully) connects the dots left behind by the artist himself over a half-century recording career. The result is the richest, most complete understanding of Dylan the Radical Monotheist to date.” – Tony Norman, Pittsburgh Post-GazetteBobDylanSpiritualLife
  • “Well researched and energetically argued, a challenging new view of a complicated man.” – Eric Alterman, award-winning author and columnist at The Nation

“Bob Dylan: A Spiritual Life” is not just another biography. It’s an expose on the hidden life of a legend and a remarkable examination of the interaction between faith and fame. And it might just change your own spiritual life.

“Bob Dylan: A Spiritual Life” is the remarkable spiritual journey of an American icon. You’ll never look at American pop culture the same way again – or Christianity! Discover the true story behind one of the most influential artists of the 20th century.

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